Dai Greene Shoots for Gold in 2012, by Alfons Juck, note by Larry Eder


One of the biggest surprises in Daegu was the lack of medals by the men's U.S. 400 meter hurdle squad. The man who took the gold, Dai Greene, who had also won the 2010 European Championships at 400m hurldes as well well. Greene told British media that he believes more British athletes should consider Greene's focus. Dai Greene admits that he wants a third gold medal to go with his gold medals from the 2010 Europeans and 2011 World Championships. Greene is focused on adding another gold to his collection. Only time will tell, but Mr. Greene has to know that he has a huge bullseye on his back now that he has won major championships two years in a row. More than most, Dai Greene knows that only a few things matter: get one'self to the championships, run the rounds well so one gets into the final, and then, run a great race in the final! 

Kenya wins
CHIBA (JPN, Nov 23): Due to the qualities of two teenagers - Patrick Mutunga Mwikya and Edwin Mokua - who run two 10km stages, Kenya won the 2011 Chiba International Ekiden on the national holiday in Japan. It was Kenya's first victory in Chiba Ekiden since the race turned to men/women mixed race in 2007.  Twelve teams - ten national teams along with JPN Collegiate team and Chiba Prefecture team - contested six stages marathon distance Ekiden.  The men ran 5Km first stage (fastest Kenyan Longosiwa 13:36), 10Km third stage (28:08 Mwikya) and 10Km fifth stage (Mokua 27:43), while women ran 5Km second stage (Nishihara of Japan 15:17), 5Km fourth stage (Kobayashi 15:46) and 7.195Km sixth stage (Niiya 22:36). Kenya clocked 2:04:40 ahead of Japan 2:04:59, Japan College 2:07:26, Russia 2:07:56 and USA fifth 2:09:06.

Borzakovskiy no for Istanbul
MOSCOW (RUS): Daegu bronze winner and former olympic gold medalist at 800 m Yuriy Borzakovskiy plans 3-4 indoor competitions. But will not compete in Istanbul at World Indoor Championships. "We want not to repeat mistakes from past years with my coach Vyacheslav Yevstratov and after short indoor season we will start our olympic preparation in the right time," said Borzakovskiy from his training camp in Kirgizstan. "I m healthy and currently in good training," said Borzakovskiy who plans not only for London 2012 but also for Rio de Janeiro 2016 (will be 35 at that time).

Award for Shobukhova
MOSCOW (RUS): Russian runner Liliya Shobukhova has won the AIMS/ASICS Athlete of the Year Award. She becomes the first Russian athlete to win the coveted award, following on from last year's winner Mary Keitany. ASICS Russia's Marketing Manager, Natalia Lapochkina, presented Shobukhova with the Golden Shoe Trophy during a short handover ceremony in Moscow. Shobukhova who recently turned 34 won the World Marathon Majors series and improved at Chicago marathon to 2:18:20. The AIMS/ASICS World Athlete of the Year Awards were founded in 1992 and are decided each year from nominations made by the 310 member races of AIMS. Informs AIMS website.


ADDIS ABABA (ETH): Leichtathletik.de informs that olympic winner and world record holder Kenenisa Bekele is building close to Addis Ababa a big Sports and Recreation facility. Not only running track but also golf course and football field should be part of it. It is not known yet whether Bekele will compete in next months in the CC races or indoors. 

LONDON (GBR): Reigning Bupa Great North 10Km road race champion Louise Damen faces an uphill task if she is to realise her ambition of competing in next year's Olympic Games Marathon. Damen who achieved the UK Athletics qualifying mark of 2:31 when running 2:30:00 at the Virgin London Marathon in April was hoping to run even faster in Japan last weekend to stake her claim for early selection next month. But the 28-year-old suffered a major setback when unable to cope with the hot and humid conditions she dropped out of the Yokohama Women's International Marathon between 10 and 15 kilometres on Sunday.  Paula Radcliffe with Mara Yamauchi are the top two to be selected as of now. That will effectively leave Jo Pavey (2:28:24), Claire Hallissey (2:29:27) and  Damen (2:30:00) fighting for the remaining spot which will be revealed following the 2012 Virgin London Marathon next April. Informs David Martin.
LONDON (GBR): London 2012 have unveiled the designs of the retro Games Maker uniform which will be worn by around 70,000 volunteers and 6,000 London 2012 staff during the Games along with the uniform which will be worn by around 4,500 technical officials. The uniforms will be a visible presence for the millions of spectators who will be coming to London and the UK next year, while they fulfil all the necessary practical criteria for a diverse range of Games Makers, London 2012 staff and technical officials to undertake the varied roles that will be required during the Games.

MONTE CARLO (MON): IAAF informs that the dedicated competition website for the IAAF World Indoor Championships, Istanbul, Turkey (9 - 11 March 2012) has opened fully on Wednesday. Along with essentials such as the Timetable, Qualification Standards, Approved Implements, you will find snap-shots about the history of the World Indoor Championships and of athletics in Turkey which begin our written editorial build-up to Istanbul 2012.

CHARLOTTESVILLE (USA): Race Results Weekly writes that  in an unexpected move, the University of Virginia's head coach and director of track and field and cross country, Jason Vigilante, has resigned, university officials announced yesterday.  Vigilante, who coached middle distance stars Robby Andrews and Lance Roller, had been with the college since 2008. Originally from Morristown, N.J., Vigilante competed for North Carolina State during his collegiate career, but was not an outstanding athlete (in 1997 he finished 105th at the USA Cross Country Championships).  He turned to training athletes in 1997, and became best known as a coach when working at the University of Texas where he started as an assistant coach, and was promoted to head cross country coach and was responsible for guiding the development of the school's middle distance runners, including Olympian Leo Manzano. Earlier this year, "Vig" started coaching miler Alan Webb who relocated from Portland, Ore., to Charlottesville.  There was no word yet on how his resignation from Virginia would affect his relationship with Webb.

AMSTERDAM (NED): Dutch decathlete Ingmar Vos is back in full training and preparing for the 2012 season. Vos had ruptured a muscle at the world championships in Daegu and was forced to give up after only two events. With the injury fully healed Vos is back in his training location in Birmingham, he reports on his website.

DIEST (BEL): Belgian athlete Atelaw Bekele is currently training in Ethiopia with a group of about 30 Ethiopian athletes. Bekele is hoping to prepare in the best possible way for the European Cross Country championships in December and is aiming to win the Belgian cross country circuit Lotto Crosscup. The Belgian was born in Ethiopia and later moved to Belgium reports Het Laatste Nieuws.

BERLIN (GER): Ethiopian Eleni Gebremedhin might take on the German nationality and represent Germany. Gebremedhin is married to a German and lives and trains in Germany. She hopes to be able to run for Germany as soon as 2013 reports leichtahletik.de.

BERLIN (GER): With 2011 being a highly successful season for German athletics DLV director Thomas Kurschilgen told leichathletik.de that 2012 might bring Germany's strongest team in 10 years. With only two medals in 2004 and one medal in 2008 Kurschilgen believes his team is able to perform much better in London.

GAINESVILLE (USA): Fast sprinter Jeff Demps (21, best of 10.01) said that if he's drafted by an NFL team he'll likely bypass trying to make the U.S. Olympic team in 2012. "Coming up, the Olympics wasn't there. I was always a football guy that watched football. When I started running in high school that's when I started thinking about track,'' he said for floridatoday.com.

LONDON (GBR): World champion 400m hurdler Dai Greene believes his fellow Team GB athletes would do well to adopt his attitude as they target future success. The 25-year-old believes some athletes have underachieved in their disciplines, either because they just don't set their sights high enough or because they crumble in the face of pressure and expectation he said for the Daily Mail. Greene is hoping to add another gold medal to his tally from the London Olympic Games.

LONDON (GBR): BBC informs that Jamaican sprinter Steve Mullings is determined to prove his "innocence to the world" following a life ban for a second doping offence. "Myself and my attorneys are focusing our time and energy on proving my innocence to the world," Mullings said for BBC. It is expected he will appeal at the CAS.

LONDON (GBR): The London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG) announced that Blade Runner Oscar Pistorius has become the latest ambassador to join London 2012's international sports legacy programme, International Inspiration. Gold medallist and world-record holder Pistorius has recently visited International Inspiration projects in Tanzania, witnessing the impact that the programme, which uses sport and play to engage young children, is already having. During his trip he also helped launch the programme's partnership with the Laureus Sports for Good foundation.

STOCKHOLM (SWE): Researchers at Linköping University have been tasked with establishing how common sexual harassment is within Sweden athletics, in the wake of revelations by Olympian Patrik Sjöberg that he was abused by his coach. The team of researchers, who will conduct the study by contacting 500-600 people on the web and by mail, have been commissioned by the Swedish Athletics Federation. Champion high jumper Patrik Sjöberg has been critical of the Athletics Federation which he accuses of not having taken the problem seriously. The former high jump world champion caused a media storm earlier this year with revelations in his autobiography admitting that he had been sexually abused by his former coach Viljo Nousiainen reports thelocal.se.

KINGSTON (JAM): Jamaica Observer informs that  Howard Aris, the man who presided over the most successful period in Jamaica's track and field history, was laid to rest at the Dovecot Memorial Park, St Catherine. Glowing tributes flowed at the thanksgiving service - unveiled in a purple and white-themed setting of Aris' alma mater, Kingston College - at the National Indoor Sports Centre (NISC) for the former Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) president. Warren Blake, newly installed president of the JAAA, who also read a message from International Association of Athletics Federations President Lamine Diack, said Aris' shoes will be hard to fill. Some of those who were in attendance included: athletes - Usain Bolt, Asafa Powell, Shelly-Ann Fraser, Sherone Simpson, Kaliese Spencer, Marvin Anderson; politicians - Robert Pickersgill, Phillip Paulwell, DK Duncan; and administrators - Grace Jackson, Don Quarrie, Bert Cameron, Deon Hemmings, Juliet Cuthbert, Davian Clarke, Alfred Francis, Edward Hector, Ali McNab, David Mais, Lydel Wright, Ajani Williams and Captain Horace Burrell.

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